Malcolm Davis

Earlier this week we lost one of the greats in the ceramics field:  Malcolm Davis.  He died during PT shortly after a hip replacement.

Like Malcolm, I left ‘formal’ ministry pursuits when I ‘discovered’ that I was really a potter.  Malcolm’s legacy of generotivity, humility and humor will be with us for generations.

Malcolm was in the middle of curating a Shino glaze exhibition for NCECA 2012.  I hope someone picks up the details so that he can be honored through the exhibition.

Many of us knew him primarily as the creator of a glaze that we coveted and used (because of his generosity).  At a Shino conference at NYU where several of us Shino pratitioners were presenters, Malcolm was quick to point to those before him…even students, who had made some of the first breakthroughs to a glaze that could achieve ultra carbon trapping.

This piece of mine was included in a ceramics text. Asked for a title, I simply titled the piece :Thank You Malcolm

Malcolm encouragedd all of us to use his glaze, and then share what we’d learned.  Here is a detail of one of my rope-textured, side-fired pieces:

Rope-textured pot with Malcolm's Shino glaze.

One of my works, using Malcolm’s glaze, made the cover of the Ceramics Monthly Magazine in March 2005:

Malcolm's glaze with ash, colorants and flux added.

The extent to which Malcolm insinuated his way into others’ successes may never be fully known.  Certainly I want to recognize and thank him for his generosity to me.

Thank you, Malcolm.


To see all of Dick’s posts, just click on “add a comment” below…… then click “view all posts by Dick Lehman”.


About dicklehman

Potter, writer, educator. Available for offering pottery teaching workshops. Available for curating exhibitions.
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8 Responses to THANK YOU, MALCOLM

  1. samroderick says:

    Thank you for your post.

  2. Sharon Kelley Warrington says:

    Thank you Dick for your beautiful tribute to Malcolm, he will be sorely missed by all of us. The ‘Shino Extravaganza’ Malcolm was working on curating will hopefully take place as planned during NCECA 2013 in Houston, TX at Lone Star College, North Harris campus. We were so excited last week about the show’s official approval by the 2013 selection committee and will now do what needs to be done to carry on and make Malcolm proud.

  3. Sandi Finney says:

    What are the funeral arrangements for Malcolm?

  4. corylum says:

    dick thanks for sharing. i am deeply deeply saddened with the loss of malcolm. he was a mentor and friend. deepest heartfelt condolences to his family. thanks for writing this eloquent homage to a pioneer in shino. humble thanks ! cory Lum

  5. Cheryl Livingston says:

    Thank you for this tribute to Malcolm. Many years ago I attended a workshop given by him at Old Church Art Center, Demarest, NJ. His generosity of knowledge and spirit were inspiring. Everyday I use a teapot made at that workshop with a beautiful shino glaze on it, and one of my favorite bowls was fired at Old Church using a rich and wonderful “Malcolm Davis black” glaze. I treasure them both and the memories of meeting Malcolm.

  6. Connie Baugh says:

    Thanks for sharing ,Dick. I have not had the honor of meeting you, but I am certain we know many of the same people. I am now a retired minister in the Presbyterian Church, USA. I started making pots in my late 40’s. Malcolm and I often talked about our shared political and social views as well as pot-talk. I am signing up for your blog and hope to meet you one day. Thanks for your words about Malcolm.

  7. dicklehman says:

    Thanks to you all for sharing some of your memories and our shared loss.

  8. What a sad day for our field. Dick, I send you my condolences as well as to his family. What a lovely tribute that you have written to him…Thank you

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